Permanent Residence

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South African Permanent Residence

If you wish to reside in South Africa permanently you may apply for permanent residence. There are many categories you can apply under. Business Visa Life Partner Visa Work Visa Retirement Visa Financially Independent Visa

  • Business Visa [Section 27(c)]
  • Spouse / Life Partner Visa [Section 26(b)]
  • Work Visa [Section 26(a)]
  • Retirement Visa [Section 26(e)]
  • Financially Independent Visa [ section 27(f)]
  • Indefinite refugee status [Section 27(d)]

On the 1st of July 2005 it became mandatory for a life partner couple to be together for 5 years or more before they apply for Permanent Residence under the life partner category. The rule came about because of the increased number of "quick" marriages that were taking place in order to get people into the country.
Permanent Residence applications take on average 10 - 15 months due to the back log at Home Affairs.
Direct residence permits
This category of permit is applicable to foreigners who have been residing in South Africa on the basis of their work permits for a minimum period of five years, their spouses and also their dependents of South African citizens/permanent residence permit holders. Residency-on-other-grounds permits, applies to foreigners who:

  • are in possession of a permanent work offer in South Africa, or
  • have exceptional skills and qualifications
  • intend to establish a business in South Africa
  • qualify as Refugees in terms of Section 27(c) of the Refugees Act
  • qualify as retired persons
  • are financially independent
  • are relatives (biologically or judicially adopted) of a South African citizen/permanent residence permit holder